First of all, I just wanted to say that only someone calloused from a lifetime in church (like me) could pass over the first line of the song in yesterday’s blog completely without comment. “Pardon for sin.” Yeah, yeah. Of course. Now on to the important stuff.
Second, I am working on my blog first, before I weigh in on the discussion topics for my on-line course. You get my finest and freshest writing efforts tonight!
And third, I was sitting in the last of our three-day storytelling seminars today when I realized just how finished I am with some things.
I’m finished being an expert.
I’m finished arguing about things dogmatically that no one can really know for sure anyhow.
I’m finished owning outcomes, especially when they are dependent on other people.
I’m finished being one of the people that claim Kingdom work as a profession.
I’m finished attempting to be someone I am not.
I’m finished trying to give people things they need but don’t want.
Yeah. It wasn’t a bad day, exactly, but it was a bit rough. To be fair, I got less than 5 hours of sleep last night, so that colored my whole outlook.
So, I was a facilitator for this training. Throughout I have tried not to come across as the expert or imparter of wisdom. Whenever it was my turn to facilitate, I always tried to lead with questions and let them discover things themselves.
Unfortunately, we seemed to have a lot of people in the room who did think themselves expert in one area or another. I found they sometimes hijacked the conversation to pour out their knowledge.
My mistake was to respond in kind, and at one point today I violated my own principle and started sharing an opinion I feel pretty strongly about.
In the middle of what I was saying, someone else just said flat out, “I absolutely don’t agree with that.” I was completely thrown. I am not a debater. I do not like conflict. My credibility has been doubted so many times before that I am extremely gun-shy. I floundered and faltered. I looked at Mr., lost, and he gallantly picked up my cause, at least finishing the thought I had been trying to convey.
Later another lady, misunderstanding me, tried to advise me in using the national language. Yes, she has been here longer than I have, but she is, by her own admission, not good in the language. It irritated me even further.
Sure, so my own pride was hurt in these two exchanges, and I have to own that part of the problem is that I wanted recognition for knowing things, just like those people did.
But why? Why do we so desperately want to be the answer givers? I believe more and more that one person’s answers rarely fit another person. Not that there isn’t absolute truth, because there is. I’m just finished arrogantly assuming that I have it all figured out.